When it comes to self-care, having a morning routine is definitely on my list of priorities. I spent way too many years rushing out of the house during my morning commute in NYC. My coffee was always in a to go cup, sloshing around on the crammed L train into Manhattan. If I was lucky, I would pack a yogurt in my bag and mix it with a bag of granola stashed away in one of my office cabinets. Other times I would stop in at the bodega for a granola bar or splurge on an egg sandwich from Bagel Maven. I would eat at my desk while checking emails, during meetings, whenever I could spare a minute. And it sucked.
I decided one day to do the unthinkable - wake up 30 minutes earlier than normal and sit down for breakfast at my kitchen table. I bought myself a cute robe (also a must in the world of morning routine) that inspired me to slow down and feel more peaceful in the morning, instead of the normal spastic, rushy behavior I had grown accustomed to. I made a piece of toast with almond butter, raw honey, banana, & sea salt, brewed a cup of coffee, and watched the morning news. It was GLORIOUS! And I never went back. There have definitely been a few times since then where I accidentally hit the snooze and need to run out of the house, but those mornings are now fewer and far between.
The morning routine definitely got kicked up a notch when I started to infuse cardamom into my coffee! Here's how I do it:
1. In a small pan, toast a handful of cardamom pods over medium heat, stirring often so they don't burn on any side. Heat for a few minutes until pods become fragrant. (I like to toast a weeks worth of pods at once to save time on future mornings! (After a week, they will start to lose their potency)
2. Remove from heat and let cool.
3. Start with using 2 cardamom pods for every 4 cups of coffee. Remove seeds from the pods and add them in with your coffee beans while you are grinding. If you buy your coffee already ground, crush up the seeds first using a mortar and pestle before throwing them in your grounds, or just throw them in whole if you're too lazy (you just may need to use more pods per coffee)!
4. Make coffee! I enjoy the pour-over method using my vintage Chemex I found at the local flea market for 7 bucks.
5. Add a teaspoon of raw local honey and a little organic whole milk (I love Straus' organic whole milk) and enjoy your new fancy coffee!
According to Ayurveda, cardamom increases your digestive fire, alleviates headaches, combats nausea, and reduces bloating!